Once upon a time, just the other day, there lived a family of five just down the street. Some days Momma stayed home, and some days Daddy stayed home. Every day Ava Anne, Savannah Lynn, and Hunter Thomas stayed home. Nothing extravagant ever seemed to happen. In fact, every day seemed almost the same as the day before. When Ava Anne, Savannah Lynn and Hunter Thomas awoke, they would tip-toe out of their bedrooms, down the hall, and to the kitchen. Momma or Daddy would be there or on the nearby couch, reading or eating or doing something uninteresting like sorting mail.
On this particular day, Hunter Thomas awoke first. Hunter Thomas scrambled out of his big boy bed, flung open the bedroom door, and ran down the hall toward the kitchen.
His favorite cousin, Joey, was coming over this morning. Joey was three years old just like Hunter Thomas. Hunter Thomas knew they would play outside, play with trucks and trains, and have fun all day.
“Momma! Momma! Is Joey hee-ah yet?” Hunter Thomas yelled as he ran.
Momma chuckled. She was sitting on the couch sorting mail.
“No. Aunt Lori should be here to drop him off in about an hour,” Momma replied.
Hunter Thomas thought that sounded like a terribly long time. He stood still and sighed.
“By the time you get dressed and eat breakfast and we make your bed, it will almost be time. Let’s get some breakfast first,” Momma suggested.
Momma was right. Hunter Thomas had just finished helping Momma make his big boy bed when the doorbell rang. Hunter Thomas gasped and his eyes grew wide. Then he ran for the door. He saw Aunt Lori through the window. Hunter Thomas opened the big front door.
“Good morning, Hunter Thomas,” Aunt Lori said as she gave him a hug.
“Hi! Joey, let’s go play!”
Joey kicked off his shoes and chased down the hall after Hunter Thomas. They played all the way until lunch time when Momma called them to the kitchen for grilled cheese and apple sauce. Joey and Hunter Thomas were both eating quickly so they could play again, and Momma knew what they were up to.
“Don’t eat so quickly,” Momma said. “After lunch you both can take your nap in Hunter Thomas’s big boy bed. And--”
“But we want to pway!” Hunter Thomas interrupted.
“You will have lots of time to play after your nap. But I’m afraid you’ll both be very grumpy if you don’t go to sleep,” Momma finished.
After lunch she tucked them both into Hunter Thomas’s big boy bed. They each had their heads at different ends of the bed.
“The faster you go to sleep, the faster you can get back to playing,” Momma reminded the boys.
The both shut their eyes tight to show her they were trying hard to fall asleep.
“Ok. Sweet dreams,” Momma said.
Momma left the door open just a crack so she could hear any mischief Hunter Thomas and Joey might get into. All was quiet for a few minutes. Then Momma heard talking.
As Momma slowly opened the door she saw Hunter Thomas sitting next to Joey.
“What’s wong?” Hunter Thomas asked.
Joey held both hands over his face and mumbled something.
“Joey, what’s the matter?” Momma asked as she walked over to the big boy bed.
Joey muttered, “Thomas.”
Momma looked confused for a moment. She glanced at Hunter Thomas as if he might know
why Joey was talking about Thomas.
“Thomas!” Hunter Thomas whispered suddenly and jumped out of bed.
He ran to the bin on the shelf that held all his cars and trucks and trains. He dumped them all out on the floor and began searching through them.
“Hunter Thomas,” Momma said, “you need to get back in bed. It is not play time.”
Just then Hunter Thomas grabbed one train and ran back to bed. He climbed into the big boy bed and crawled over to Joey.
“Hee-ah, Joey, I found Thomas,” Hunter said as he offered the train to Joey.
Joey rubbed the tears from his eyes and took the train from his cousin’s hand. Then he rolled over and closed his eyes for sleep.
“Thank you, Hunter Thomas,” Momma said, “That was very sweet.”
“He wikes to sweep with Thomas the twain,” Hunter Thomas replied.
“Yes,” Momma said, “I think you’re right. Sweet dreams, Hunter. Sweet dreams, Joey.”